Stomach Growls: What You Never Knew
There’s more than just hunger pains behind that growling noise coming from your stomach. You may think it’s your body’s way of telling you to eat something, but it may be the message is about more than just easing your hunger.
Your digestive system
It’s important to understand the relationship between your stomach and your digestive system so you can better understand why your stomach is making noise.
Your digestive system is basically a long tube that begins with your mouth and ends with your anal cavity. It’s a pretty simple system, but gets complicated when you factor in the various organs in your body. Your food is moved through your system with muscular contractions (called peristalsis) that digest your food and move it through your body. These contractions also help your body combine liquid with solid and gastric acids.
Most of the noises coming from your body are your digestive system mixing the contents of your stomach with the liquids there. The air produced in your system begins busting wit the contractions of your intestines, which produces that distinctive popping sound. These sounds can be produced at any time even when you are not angry. The difference is that when your stomach is full, these sounds are less perceptible.
If your stomach is empty, why then is your digestive system contracting? Around two hours before your stomach is completely empty, it begins to produce certain hormones that stimulate the nervous system and send message to the brain which say “eat some more.” The brain responds to these signals with an order to produce peristalsis. These contractions finish emptying your stomach, and may even provoke other hunger symbols so you feel the urge to eat again.
What causes excessive stomach growls?
Everything we’ve discussed before is actually pretty normal activity. When your stomach growls excessively, it can not only affect your health, but your digestive process. This often happens without cause. The cause of these excessive noises may be due to more than just hunger.
If you are eating less than what you are used to consuming during the day or night, you may confuse your digestive system. Strict diets can often consist of foods that have certain nutrients or high amounts of calories and produce excessive stomach noises, because food is digested faster, signaling your body’s indicators of hunger.
Consumption of soft drinks
The mixture of gases and air inside your stomach can cause these sounds as well. If you are drinking soft drinks or other carbonized beverages, you increase the amount of bubbles in your digestive system which can rupture and produce gastric noises. When your body can’t eliminate or expel this excess air naturally, the process takes place inside your digestive system. Eating too quickly or ingesting air along with your food are also causes of this symptom.
Lactose present in milk, yogurts, creams and cheese is the most common food intolerance. When these components remain in your belly too long, the bacteria that is present in them can produce extra gas and bubbles in your system. You should always pass on any food you have a food intolerance for.
Ulcers in your digestive system can be a cause as well, differing only in the time and amount of air present in your system. This condition is accompanied by pain and discomfort, having nothing to do with hunger. You should adjust your diet to address this issue.
Symptoms of Irritable bowel syndrome
The symptoms of this disorder are similar to those of ulcers, because in addition to causing gastric noises, powerful pains after eating certain foods result.
How to control the condition?
When the condition is not directly related to a medical condition, you can do certain things to help control or alleviate it.
- Chew your food well. When your body combines the solids and liquids in your stomach there will be less gas produced.
- Have a cup of tea after your food, such a mint which can help ease stomach issues.
- Don’t breathe too deeply during eating to reduce the amount of air you ingest.
- Eat less. Snacks are simpler to digest and don’t allow your stomach the opportunity to send hunger signals to the brain.